Google Books Digital Library and Bookstore and the monetiztion of libraries conflicts with copyright law.
ABOUT THE GREAT GOOGLE BOOK GRAB and Google's Monetization of Libraries
The Great Google Book Grab
Now that the settlement is dead, the Justice Department should ask Google to stop all scanning of in-copyright works, and place all previously-scanned, in-copyright works that were scanned without express permission of the rights holder, in a dark archive. Google can use them when opt-in permission of the rights-holder is obtained, or when Congress or the Supreme Court resolves copyright infringement issues.
So what if we're evil: "We're going full steam ahead, no matter what happens with the settlement." Dan Clancy, Google Books executive Boston Globe, July 24, 2009
MONETIZATION OF LIBRARIES
Google's Monetization of Libraries
Google and the libraries involved have at their core a mission and philosophy of open access to information, even if their economic and organizational missions are very different. This conflict can be seen as a conscious attempt to push the boundaries of copyright law outward, by organizations that are well-informed about the legal issues but determined to build a more open information model. They are saying “sue us.” Google co-founder Larry Page is cited in an article that appeared in Tuesday's Information World Review as being a "firm believer in academic libraries being able to 'monetise' the information they hold." (3) Paul Courant, provost at the University of Michigan, is quoted in the Chronicle of Higher Education as saying the project is worth "hundreds of millions" of dollars to his University alone. (4) Google obviously considers that kind of money to be a good investment, which means they expect many hundreds of millions in revenue from these collections, through advertising in the near term and probably other means in the longer term.
Google-Watch.org, argued that the Google search engine invades privacy, posted a heretofore confidential contract between Google and the University of Michigan.
- Michigan Digitization Project PDF is the university hosted page about activities there.
- § 108. Limitations on exclusive rights: Reproduction by libraries and archives
- The United States Library of Congress has announced the creation of the World Digital Library today, a project that's also just received its first $3 million in funding from Google."
DIGITIZING IN - COPYRIGHT BOOKS
Digitizing in-copyright books and acquiring copyright permissions, has taken place in terms of developing the Universal Library http://www.ul.cs.cmu.edu/html/ with a goal of digitizing one million books as well as other digitization efforts.
Carnegie Mellon is working with a number of other libraries on the One Million Book Project and with the governments of India and China. One thing they have discovered is that getting permission for digitizing in-copyright books is a time consuming and expensive proposition.
GOOGLE BOOKS DEFINITION OF COPYRIGHT
Legal's view is that what is copyright protected is the SEQUENCE of the words
The following is based upon a lengthy evaluation from the university's legal counsel explaining that it's OK to digitize a book, create a searchable index, and offer full text searching WITHOUT the permission of the copyright holder -- provided that you not only don't display, but that you destroy the digitized pages.
Legal's view is that what is copyright protected is the SEQUENCE of the words, so you can break up the sequence in an index and use it for retrieval, but you can't display the words in context (a "snippet") because the sequence is copyright protected. Some leaders of the Universal Library tend to think that a snippet (a few lines) is covered under fair use.
One of the directors of the UL has developed a user interface he calls "contextual searching," which displays your search terms in context, i.e., with a snippet of words before and after your search terms.
The business about the digitization being done by a commercial firm (Google) rather than
the library that purchased the book gets at the law that says a library can digitize a legally acquired copy of a book without permission under certain circumstances for PRESERVATION purposes. The preservation copy is NOT a USE copy.
There are some strict, mitigating circumstances that would allow the preservation copy to be used (e.g., if there was no other copy available on the planet at a reasonable price to purchase or borrow), but the preservation copy could ONLY be used on computers IN the library that held the legally acquired (now totally deteriorated, dilapidated) book.
Google's Book Scanning Technology Revealed
Researchers Nakashima, Watanabe, Komuro, and Ishikawa of the University of Tokyo have published an article fully explaining and providing pictures of a system nearly identical to that in Google's patent. It is not clear whether the Japanese researchers or Google came up with the idea first, but the University of Tokyo article does an excellent job of explaining the book scanning technology. The diagram of Google's patented technology is shown first and the diagram of the Japanese researchers' technology is shown second. The similarity is immediately obvious.
Moral Panics and the Copyright Wars - William F. Patry Senior Copyright Counsel at Google PBS
Justice Dept. Criticizes Latest Google Book Deal 2/5/2010
"In another blow to Google's plan to create a giant digital library and bookstore, the Justice Department on Thursday said that a class-action settlement between the company and groups representing authors and publishers had significant legal problems, even after recent revisions."
Google Loses Copyright Case in The French court 12/19/09 ordered Google to pay over 300,000 euros, or $430,000, in damages and interest and to stop digital reproduction of the material. The company was also ordered to pay 10,000 euros a day in fines until it removed extracts of some French books from its online database. a French court found Google guilty of copyright infringement and ordered it remove extracts of French works from its Google Books site. Google said it would appeal the ruling.
Courts Unlikely To Stop Google Book Copying by Christopher Huen, September 2, 2005
"Despite objections from publishers and writers, copyright law appears to be on Google's side, legal experts say. The social value of Google's initiative to digitize library books, including those protected by copyright, will likely weigh heavily in the search engine's favor."
Yahoo is also making deals with libraries to digitize books.
Yahoo and Microsoft have also made deals with libraries to digitize books.
CORNELL OPENS COLLECTION TO MICROSOFT
Microsoft has announced two partners in its book scanning project, which will compete with Google's controversial Book Search program. Cornell University will allow Microsoft to scan its library collection, and Kirtas Technologies will provide high-speed hardware for the scanning. Unlike Google's program, Microsoft's Windows Live Book Search will only scan books in the public domain or those whose copyright owners have granted explicit permission. Librarians from Cornell will select texts to be scanned and will oversee quality control for the process. Kirtas claims that its scanning machines are capable of digitizing 2,400 pages per hour and are gentler that human hands with the books.
2009 A Book Grab by Google by Brewster Kahle
For the majority of books -- considered "orphan" works -- no one will claim ownership. The author may have died; the publisher might have gone out of business or doesn't respond to inquiries; the original contract has disappeared. Google would get an explicit, perpetual license to scan and sell access to these in-copyright but out-of-print orphans, which make up an estimated 50 to 70 percent of books published after 1923. No other provider of digital books would enjoy the same legal protection. The settlement also creates a Book Rights Registry that, in conjunction with Google, would set prices for all commercial terms associated with digital books."
Thomas Lord "The issue as I see it is that the law already had provisions for the kind of scanning Google wanted to do. Libraries are explicitly permittedby federal statute to build such scanned collections and explicitly forbidden to partner with a 3rd party for that 3rd party's commercial advantage. Google and the libraries that participated simply ignored the law. The scanning could have been legally performed by Google by leaving the libraries, not Google, with the final database. Google could have offered technological assistance to the libraries to put an API on the collection that would afford Google a chance to build something like their book search feature. They could have stayed in bounds and instead they behaved as if the law didn't apply to them on account of their good names."
GOOGLE PRINT BOOK LIBRARY
EXERPT: "a page view is a page view, regardless of whether the page in question has a picture of a cat, a single link to another site, or the full text of Freakonomics. When all you're selling is ad space, the value shifts from the content to the viewer. And ultimately the content is valued at nothing. And here, finally, is the larger problem posed by Google's actions.
Books are not in any important sense user-centric. Whether or not a book has readers matters little. Books stand on their own, over time, as ideas and creations. In the world of books, it is the ideas and the authors that matter most, not the readers. That is why the copyright exists in the first place, to protect the value of these created works, a value which Google is trying mightily to deny. As much as any other American business, Google is the corporate embodiment of the Internet's first principles. And as with so much else on the Internet, the promise of Google Book Search lies somewhere off on the horizon, while the dangers it poses today are very real."
About Google Book Search which used to be called Google Print Library Project Source known as the library that all the world could use via "universal accessibility" is now turning its readers over first to bookstores, and then to libraries as it becomes more and more plainly obvious that Google's library is not really a library but merely a catalog for bookstores and libraries for those who already have easy access to them. ~ Michael Hart, Internet user #100 since 1971 & Gutenberg Project Executive Coordinator http://www.gutenberg.org
Google Print vs. The Open Library vs. Project Gutenberg
The Year of the Electronic Library: Obviously the Big Boys have finally discovered books on the Internet.
Just under a year ago Google's multi-million dollar media blitz of December 14 ran hog wild through the media, getting more attention from television, radio and print media than eBooks had received in toto during their 35 years of existence, in spite of "The Wall St. Journal" claim to fame as being the first to put the word INTERNET on the front page or cover of any major media outlet in Oct, 1991,in reference to the growing idea[l] of Project Gutenberg eBooks.
However, since Google didn't really DO anything after such a great public relations coup, no one ended up paying any attention and it appears as if the momentum, at least the media momentum was lost. This was confirmed a few weeks ago when Yahoo and Internet Archive press releases about starting a competitive eLibrary failed to put any wind in the media's sails.
However, Google seems to have been paying attention, and finally a release from the Google Print Library resulted, but it turned out, sadly to say, that these releases were not turning out to be greatevents as had been predicted last December 14.
Most of the books were hard to search, impossible to download, and on subjects of little interest, and what interest there was stayed with the various lawsuits Google was being threatened with for any of a number of copyright problems, even though Google pretended an enormous amount of public domain works were still copyrighted in a concerted effort to ameliorate the situation.
Not content to let the Google Print Library and Yahoo Open Content Alliance/Open Book Library steal all this glory, Amazon and Random House announced their own eLibrary just a week later.
Today we saw yet another entry from The Library of Congress, as it received 3 million dollars to start their own project, from a most unlikely source, Google! It was suggested at today's Geek Lunch a motivation of Google's might be to let The Library of Congress pay the price in non-cash value, for opening the vast intercontinental virtual prairieland to the virtual settlers, who just happed to be an assortment of multi-billion dollar cartels, who have felt those slings and arrows of their misfortune a little too much.
Directory of Open Access Repositories: There are already open source research sites available.
"The OpenDOAR service is being developed to support the rapidly emerging movement towards Open Access to research information. This will categorise and list the wide variety of Open Access research archives that have grown up around the world."
"The project is a joint collaboration between the University of Nottingham in the UK and the Lund University in Sweden. Both institutions are active in supporting Open Access development. Lund operates the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ), which is known throughout the world." Also find out about the Registry of Open Access Repositories (ROAR), a project based at the University of Southampton.
Michael S. Hart Founder Project Gutenberg
Print Encyclopedias Join Dinosaurs Part 1
So, in just a single month we have seen more "action" on the parts of these multi-billion dollar alliances than ever before, except a person still has huge trouble actually downloading eBooks from any of these eLibraries. But, then again, that might NOT be their purpose, after all.
The original purpose of eLibraries, as Project Gutenberg set out a while back in 1971, was to provide library materials for people to keep, to use as sources for new editions, new libraries, etc., and to be the source for continual improvements over the centuries.
The purpose of these new entries into the fray seems to be by some other thing, as they do not invite readers to keep these materials and to create new and better editions for future readers, both via new editions, and by correcting previous editions.
The original ideal of eBooks was:
"to encourage the creation and distribution" of eLibraries, but the Newspeak Dictionary seems to have somewhat changed definitions.
The original ideal of eBooks was also to allow every reader to read in their own favorite program, and to use their own favorite search programs, indexing and concordance programs, and to choose favorite colors, margin lengths, page lengths, etc.
I can only hope there is something WE can do to keep these ideals-- such as they are--alive and thriving so WE can have our own eBooks, or own eLibraries, the way WE want them.
Read How Google Books is Changing Academic History "...]
Time for a professional dialogue about the new kinds of research these texts have opened up. For a very vast vista has erupted before us, and with it, a more serious set of comparative questions as a standard for social history, and new levels of rigor to be expected from the individual researcher. No longer can historians afford to stay in the empty, lonely world of the weary scholar, pouring of close readings of dialogue. Time for all those structural analysis skills to come back in full force. Quantitative and open databases of word-count and thematic analyses. Open databases of pictures, tagged by keywords and available for classroom use.
What this signals, by the way, is the opportunity for a new age of scholarship. Cultural and image analysis used to be painfully time-consuming, heavy lifting, involving rare kinds of access, full fellowships, immense travel, and long waits for delicate books. Comparison between different cultural sources was even harder, placing absurd demands on the cultural historian's personal memory and note-taking skills. Cultural historians, despite their many skills, stood second in depth of research on any particular topic to political historians, for whom one visit to a Parliamentary archive and one visit to a personal residence outfitted them with every last detail of historical change. Now all that is changing. Comparing a hundred images is no longer a problem for a year's labor in an out-of-the-way museum reading room. Comparing a hundred personal accounts from working men is no longer a task to eat up a social historian's entire year."
Skeptical overview of Google's campaign to digitize the world's books:
"Copyright has its foundations in English law and the Licensing Act of 1662. The falling costs of printing had created rampant book piracy in England. Concerned that such behavior would blunt creativity and harm the book business, Charles II established a register of licensed books to protect authors and publishers. A hundred years later, the copyright was the only right the Founding Fathers gauged important enough to recognize explicitly in the Constitution itself. In the intervening years, it has evolved somewhat. Today, works published before 1923 are generally in the public domain. There are exceptions and complexities, but works published after 1978 are protected by copyright for 70 years from the author's death. As for works published between 1923 and 1978, they were given an original copyright protection of 28 years from first publication and another 67 years of protection upon renewal of the copyright. Got that?
And here lies Google's dilemma: Out-of-copyright books account for about one-sixth of all titles. Most books -- 75 percent of them -- are in copyright, but out of print. Only about 10 percent of all books are both copyrighted and in print. Google has decided to get around this problem of copyright protection by simply ignoring it: forging ahead and scanning books, regardless of their copyright status. If a book is in the public domain, its full text is displayed to users, but if the book is protected, then Google shows users only a "snippet" of the text surrounding the search result. It is relevant to note that "snippet" is Google's word and is intentionally not a legal term; how much text is displayed is entirely at Google's discretion."
"Google's corporate philosophy is based on the model which brought them success: organizing and giving away other people's content, creating space for advertisements in the process. The enormous success Google found with that model in the search engine business spurred it to try and impose it in every arena. In the Google worldview, content is individually valueless. No one page is more important than the next; the value lies in the page view.
And a page view is a page view, regardless of whether the page in question has a picture of a cat, a single link to another site, or the full text of Freakonomics. When all you're selling is ad space, the value shifts from the content to the viewer. And ultimately the content is valued at nothing. And here, finally, is the larger problem posed by Google's actions.
Books are not in any important sense user-centric. Whether or not a book has readers matters little. Books stand on their own, over time, as ideas and creations. In the world of books, it is the ideas and the authors that matter most, not the readers. That is why the copyright exists in the first place, to protect the value of these created works, a value which Google is trying mightily to deny.
As much as any other American business, Google is the corporate embodiment of the Internet's first principles. And as with so much else on the Internet, the promise of Google Book Search lies somewhere off on the horizon, while the dangers it poses today are very real."